Istanbul Agop Cymbals are based in the Republic of Turkey and their products are well respected for their unique sound; formed by the method and the alloy used known only to the owners, Arman and Sarkis Tomurcuk. It is one of two companies that formed after the split of Istanbul Cymbals.
The art of Turkish cymbal making dates back to the 16th century, the time of the Ottoman Empire. The very first cymbals manufactured in Turkey were actually bells, created for the use in churches. Later on, as the story goes, cymbals were produced for the Ottoman military band. In the 20th century, it had become well known that Istanbul had evolved into the cymbal-making capital of the world. Generations of master cymbalsmiths developed, refined, and redefined this art in their endless search for perfection. They formulated the most musical alloy and developed and tested hand-crafting methods which had been used for centuries. As the 20th century drew to its close, the traditional Turkish method for hand crafting cymbals had all but been abandoned due to the efficiencies and mass production facility provided by machines. In 1980, the first Istanbul Cymbals began to be produced by Agop Tomurcuk, who had been working in the business of hand-made cymbal manufacture since the age of nine and had worked at the original K factory in Istanbul as the foreman until the factory's closure in 1978, and his partner Mehmet Tamdeger, under the name "Zilciler". Shortly afterwards the company Istanbul was founded.